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Andy Hilgartner

                 
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I started my long-term research project at age 15. I've spent most of the past 66 years studying what makes our culture-and-languages so dysfunctional. To me, our own culture looks like the most restricted and restrictive, the most unsatisfying and wretched, on record -- a human environment, created by humans, unfit for humans to live in. And yet for 6000 years or so, that culture, by a combination of guile and violence, has made itself dominant over Planet Earth's other cultures. Today it controls almost every populated land-mass on the planet. Furthermore, we its members have made it the most dangerous-- especially to the human genus/species, and to the non-human organisms currently harbored by Planet Earth.

I have also studied what we humans can do to avert the self-inflicted crisis. What will it take for us to stop our stampede towards committing species suicide and towards exterminating the rest of the biosphere? What will it take for us to heal ourselves-and-our-planet instead?

I pick up where Alfred Korzybski (1879-1950) left off. In his 1921 book, Manhood of Humanity, Korzybski criticizes and rejects the lethal self-reflexive assumptions of that culture, and replaces them with assumptions based on his own life-experiences. He then re-examined what we have learned since Aristotle's day -- and made a creative synthesis which might support human environments fit for humans to live in.

Building on Korzybski's innovations, including the premises he published in 1941, I have sought to create the basic constructs we'll need to build new, viable and sustainable languages-and-cultures. I set up a series of rigorous theoretical systems based on these novel premises. I derived a rudimentary "grammar" from them, created a "Let's Keep Track of What We Say" notation based on this derived grammar, and laid out the beginnings of a discursive (spoken-and-written) language. That work enabled me to disclose the assumptions built into the western Indo-European languages (such as English, and set theory), and into the practices of our so-dominant culture. Those assumptions posit a non-living Universe. In contrast, starting from Korzybski's novel "first principles," we now can rigorously account for living organisms, including humans. I don't know what else we will need, but already, it looks like Korzybski and I may have begun the breakthrough that offers humans some methods to heal ourselves-and-our-planet.
Come on, friends, let's DO that healing!


http://www.hilgart.org

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Sunday, June 16, 2013     

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Bradley Manning's Accomplishments
(1 comments) Most comments about PFC Bradley Manning miss the obviously obvious here. To see what Manning accomplished in his nearly-impossible situation, we must take into account at least five sets of rules: those for his job as a security analyst; for his oath; for the regulations, and the Uniform Code of Military Justice; and for the Nuremberg Principles. What he did with the myriad documents precisely satisfies each of these rules.